Match reports from Round 1 below. Solid start for all four teams!
A’s v Mt Barker Utd: 1-4 win (Report by E. O’Neill)
⚽️: Y. Sialas, A. De Candia (2) & N. Tsiknis
It was a long wait for this season’s opener due to the Coronavirus pandemic. The Unley boys had completed a long preseason under new coach Spiros. The game was played in memory of Spiros’ wife and Anthony’s mother Cristina who passed away last year. It was both of their first competitive game of football since her passing. Both teams participated in a minute’s silence in memory of Cristina prior to the game starting.
Unley started strong and looked the much better side early on. The ball was controlled well in the midfield by Captain Trickles, Nick and Aristos. Unley took the lead early with Anthony making the finish look easy with Trickles assisting.
The attackers Anthony, Jarrod and Giuseppe continued to terrorise the Mt Barker defence with Mt Barker resorting to continuous fouls as they could not cope with the pace.
The second goal came not long after the first with Yanni scrappily putting the ball across the line from a Trickles header. Among the spectators was Adelaide’s very own winner of the 2004 Young Short Model Award (Declan Gramazio) who was delighted with Yanni’s goal on debut.
Anthony then put the Rangers up 3-0 before half time when Giuseppe’s shot was saved and Anthony followed up with an easy finish.
The first half was easily controlled and defended from the defensive line of George, Eddie, Nathaniel and Yanni with Mt Barker not having a single shot on target.
The second half started and Unley looked like a completely different team as Mt Barker put on the pressure. Unley were not playing their usual style of play and were resorting to long clearances and panicking on the ball. Carl Green came off the bench and had a great game controlling the back and everyone could hear him from the many sound effects he makes during games.
A costly mistake from Unley then allowed for an easy goal for Mt Barker and it was not looking good as Mt Barker continued to pile on the pressure after.
Luckily for Unley, the referee went down with cramps for about 10 minutes which allowed for a momentum shift in the game. After the game restarted, Anthony whipped in a beautiful cross and Nick the biggest man on the pitch jumped high and headed home to put Unley 4-1 up.
The game finished with Unley winning 4-1 and taking the 3 points in the season opener.
B’s v Mt Barker Utd: 0-3 win (Report by M. Evans)
⚽️: A. Kolovos, M. Rodbourn & D. Gramazio
After the longest preseason possible dating from the 10th of December to 27th of June, finally round 1 of the CSL season was here! And the wait was worth it! There was a lot of excitement coming into the first game of the season. Made particularly with 18 players making their Unley debuts through all four grades.
The conditions were ideal for soccer, sunny, not too windy and a flat but slightly slippery deck. When the whistle commenced play, Unley were off showing some quick efficient passing in the first few moments.
Unley controlled possession and play early, showing off valuable lessons learnt through preseason with Spiros and Luke at the helm. Around ten minutes in, Ari put his scone on the end of Cams corner kick, into the back of the net to make the score 1 – 0.
Ari from centre back then went onto have a few more potential chances along with multiple one on ones from Rodbourn. Lots of run down the wing with Dario and Bryan were proving to be effective in in creating many goal scoring opportunities.
Towards the later stages of the first half, Cam, Howe and Declan were controlling the middle of the park resulting in a classy Declan Gramazio goal.
Half time 2 – 0. Luke made a few changes at half time bringing on some fresh legs. With many plays of passes coming out the back from Ari, Emlyn and Ginge creating lots of forward pressure, and a Rodbourne one and one going in the back of the net. 3 – 0.
Mt Barker had a small surge late in the second half but Bacelle in goals did a stellar job and had us covered for a clean sheet. Well done on today’s efforts lads, with three points locked away, it’s looking like a fantastic season ahead.
Let’s continue this winning streak onto next weekend!
C’s v Cardjin College: 3-3 draw (Report by A. Brown)
⚽️: A. Brown (3)
Football is back… Sunny clear skies, what better way to spend a Saturday. We all arrived earlier with whispers of playing on the artificial pitch at the state of the art facilities, home of the South Adelaide Panthers. Upon arrival our anticipation was short-lived and we were summoned to the wet, muddy pitch next door.
Early Kick off was welcomed by most (except for Jordy who may or may not of been on a bender.. but hey what’s new?).Richo rallied the troops and we kicked off against a young looking Cardijn outfit.
The first 20 minutes we were slow and we got run off the park, they managed to bag one early and to be honest was not unexpected from our play. 1-0 down.
The next 25 was a different game, Harvey is still running now with the ground he covered during the game. Fedi started to put in a few tackles in and Jordy was a rock up back as usual. We grabbed one back with a ball in behind by Warwick and a chip over the keeper. 1-1.
We were up for a fight from there, Harpas was relentless down the left wing and Verall let them know his presence in the middle. A slick ball behind the defence from Spiro and we (A. Brown) rounded the keeper and slotted another. 2-1 up.
Perhaps it was our fitness but we lost our momentum for a bit, some sloppy passes and a lapse in concentration and they grabbed one back. Their number 9 clearly played 3 divisions higher and was causing lots of problems. After they grabbed another one it was 3-2, we didn’t lose our fight and after a slick ball from Harry in behind, we (A. Brown) beat the keeper again and it was 3-3.
The game could have been stolen by either team but to be honest 3-3 was probably a fair result.
Well played to all – Harvey man of the match with their players even commenting on his work ethic. Will get them next time.
D’s v Mt Barker Utd: 2-5 win (L. Rowan)
⚽️: Y. Kharel (3), M. Davis & R. Hopkin.
Before you begin reading this, I must warn you about a few things: Firstly, for those new to the club (or as I like to call them, the A’s, B’s and C’s) I can get a little carried away and this ‘match report’ will likely get a bit wordy. Feel free to stop reading now, it will save you from wasting the next 15 minutes or so of your life that you cannot get back. For those of you crazy enough to keep reading, you’re a bunch of maniacs, but I like your style.
Secondly, I’ll be honest, I rarely remember much of matches I play in, partly due to the nature of sport and getting caught up in the moment, but mainly due to the fact that I am rarely paying attention to the game. Something that becomes very obvious if you ever watch me play. So, this ‘match report’ will rely very little on facts and incidents within the game and be mainly based upon the wild, non-sensical ramblings of a mad man.
Finally, it’s Monday morning, I haven’t written one of these for years, and I’m feeling very insulty (totally an adjective, you shut up) today, so things could get a little hairy, but strap yourselves in and ‘enjoy’ the ride (bet you wished you stopped reading earlier, don’t you?!).
So, after a brief 6-month pre-season, it was finally time to start playing for 3 points. Many of the 5s (who are the club’s 4ths and play in Div. 6… keep up), due to a combination of old age and heavy drinking, had forgotten this and so were surprised when a team that wasn’t the Unley 4s (who are the 3rds) showed up.
We were even more surprised when we found out that apparently ‘Mt’ Barker thought that the game of football could be played without goals. This was due to the fact that someone hadn’t unlocked the goals the night before (likely due to the high occurrence of criminality amongst the hill people, no offence Mike. Actually, scrap that, you’ve made your choice of where to live and I will judge you for it).
It was even more surprising to me that there was in fact, still a round 1. After much deliberation earlier this year, I had decided to try a new tactic and not injure myself badly in the pre-season, only to make a slow recovery, a brief comeback around Round 9-10, followed by more injuries at varying levels of seriousness and finishing off the season at a level of fitness that is somehow lower than when I started pre-season. I’ll let you know how it turns out.
One issue that quickly became apparent was that ‘Mt’ Barker had decided to forego their usual red kits in favour of a more confusing purple and black number which went nicely with the all-navy kits we had decided to wear. I would suggest that this created a clash of kits, except for the fact that a clash implies some sort of difference, not that both teams looked like they were wearing exactly the same fucking thing. This meant that all the players had to rely on their game sense, awareness, speed of thought, communication and crisp skills, 5 things which have never come close to making an appearance in a division 6, South Australian amateur football game.
The game began with an inspiring pep talk from the referee that he had 6 games to referee this weekend and we were (by a significant margin) the ‘lowest of the low’ and so he would be making no attempt to run or keep up with the play and that we would be lucky if he showed any interest in what was happening on the field whatsoever. Fortunately for us, we were used to this attitude, having been teammates with Elvis for the last 8 years or so.
As play got underway, the nervous energy flowing through both teams was palpable with passes going astray, players out of position, slide tackles flying in with wild abandon, so it was pretty much like every Div 6 game that’s been played, ever. But it seemed that Unley settled better and slowly got the upper hand. I’m not exactly sure how it happened, but pretty sure Yog “Petit Miam, it’s French for yum” Kharel slid a beautiful through-ball through to Mike Davis who was completely out of position as usual, he then took a touch and played the ball past the hapless ‘Mt’ Barker keeper. I seem to remember it was a decent goal too, but I’m probably mistaken as we don’t really do ‘decent goals’ in the 5s (/4s/6s) 1-0 to the good guys.
Then some more stuff happened, something, something, a ball came in long (this would prove to be a bit of a theme for the ‘Mt’ Barker boys it would seem) and I decided to give my best Matt ‘Mexico’ ‘La Tortuga’ Mays impersonation and rather than a clearing header I gave a perfect glancing header for their strikers to run onto. Luckily, Elvis was perfectly positioned to do a simple clearing kick away and get rid of the danger. Phew, crisis averted you would think. But, like a Jesse ‘Thumb’ Rochford work story, you’d be very, very, wrong. Elvis’ foot glided past the ball, missing the target like a Jesse shot on goal (later to be known as “doing a Rodbourn”) enabling the ‘Mt’ Barker striker to run through and slide in an easy goal past our experienced (but unfortunately not in goals) goalkeeper Deniz, 1-1.
Some more stuff happened, Paul (Santinon, not Cooksey, or Tankosic) made a cracking sliding challenge to stop a certain goal, Josh got a bit of a whack to the head (highlighted by Jesse running on the field yelling “Josh, did you get a bit of a whoopsy?”), these probably didn’t happen in this order, but I’m pretty sure they did happen.
Then, somehow, the new kid, (haven’t bothered to learn his name yet, is it Adam? Or Anthony? Pretty sure it starts with an A) got loose in the box and a big, angry looking, bald, sunburnt bloke took out his leg, penalty. Of course, the ‘Mt’ Barker players argued with the decision, but their argument was slightly less compelling due to the fact that the bloke who did the foul pretty much accepted it straight away. Yog stepped up to take the pen and slotted it nicely to the left past the outstretched hand of the keeper. 2-1 Unley.
But wait a second, a major twist in the story, the ref blows and orders Yog to retake due to a member of the Rangers encroaching early. Who could be that stupid I hear you say? Surely, that only happens in games that people care about, no one in this low a level would possibly jeopardise a chance to score a goal. Well it happened, but I will be the bigger man right now and not name the incomprehensible halfwit that did it. Let’s just say his initials are PC and he coaches the team (it was Paul Cooksey. By the way, sorry for calling you a halfwit, coach, you’re really great and stuff, I promise).
So Yog had to step up once again and face the incredible mind games of the opposition keeper, luckily Yog doesn’t have the mental capacity of a 2-year-old and hit an even better pen the same way. 2-1 for reals this time. Then more stuff happened, pretty sure Yog got his second goal, but don’t remember this one, then some other stuff and the ref blows the whistle for half time. 3-1 Rangers at the break (probably).
We had a bit of a chat, no one brought oranges which was disappointing. We discussed what went right (most things), what went wrong (looking at you, Elvis, mainly to deflect attention away from myself) and then Paul confirms what we’ve all known for a while now; that he’s losing it and rapidly approaching senility. He tells us that Ricky “Rabbit” Hopkins is to come on as #10 in the second half. Yep, Rich. Yep, that guy, you know the one. Him. #10. Yep, I know right?! He also brings Deniz out of the goals to create a bit more tension on the field (as usual, he didn’t disappoint) and the other new guy (Sam?) magnanimously agreed to go in goals in the second half (it had a lot to do with peer pressure, it was either that or we were going to flush his head in the toilet later. Not sure he chose correctly).
Second half started like the first one ended, Unley in complete control. The ‘Mt’ Barker boys were starting to get a little bit feisty, with Man-Bun leading the charge, but it was overall played in pretty good spirits. Deniz got shown his yellow ticket for time wasting, kicking the ball away after a foul (to be fair to Deniz though, it could easily just have been his low skill level, rather than his bad temperament that was the cause, tough to tell really).
Then somehow a ball was played through from about halfway by someone and ‘Mt’ Barker tried a brand-new tactic of not bothering to chase the ball, leaving 2 Unley players bearing down on the keeper with not a defender in sight. It was a bold choice by ‘Mt’ Barker, tough to say whether it will catch on or not, but my initial thoughts are that we may well give it a crack later in the season. So Ricky is bearing down on the keeper with the ball and Jesse to his left (crazily enough, he was even in a non-offside position, I’m not sure if he’d also taken a whack to the head, but this was completely out of character for him). Ricky decides to ignore Jesse though and go it himself (Jesse probably would’ve missed the open goal, so it was a wise move) he shoots, we all pray he misses so we can rag on him later, but unfortunately it’s a nice finish (yes, that counts as a compliment), 4-1 Navy.
A few moments later, ‘Mt’ Barker attempt another long ball (#437 for the day for those keeping count back home) Elvis and their big striker chase after it only to both end up in a crumpled heap about 2/3rds of the way down the pitch. I didn’t really see what happened, apparently there was a tangle of legs, Mike described it (at great volume) “like 2 buses colliding” (insert some inappropriate joke about riding the bus), it was pretty funny though, not sure the ref knew what to do so he wisely called play on. Some more stuff happens then Paul finally makes the call to bring on Si at right back to replace Matt.
Enthusiastically, Si sprints onto the field and promptly watches their striker run straight past him, blasting the ball into the back of the net 4-2. Strangely enough, Cooksey takes this pretty well, and he was pretty reasonable about it all, only making Simon walk home from Stirling.
Josh then went down with another deplorable dive, this time claiming he got an ouchy on his ankle. Mr Man-Bun proceeded to reach even higher levels of rage and couldn’t comprehend how one team could possibly receive more yellow cards than the opposite team (a thought apparently shared by the ref who gave Cooksey a yellow and then explained later “it was because I’d given them 4 and you guys only 1”), but I’ll give him a pass as he was clearly a simple lad, also seemingly getting confused between the ball and Unley Rangers, judging by the things he kept trying to kick.
Finally, Yog latched onto a through ball late on and finished nicely to give him a well-deserved hat trick and make the scoreline a, probably deserved, 5-2. I’d go on a bit more, but I’m pretty sure no one is reading this trash anymore and frankly I’m a bit bored of writing it. I’m also pretty sure I’ve insulted everyone on the team except ‘Party’ McCarty as he scares me a little bit.
Big thanks to Kochie and Simon (?) for going in goals, it’s a shit job and only an idiot would want to do it (I know, you’re probably worried that I’ve offended our keepers, but worry not, they’re goalkeepers, they can’t read!).